The over-riding goal of the DOME SPP is to find solutions to fundamental questions of element transport and mineralization in heterogeneous chemical systems that are complex, dynamic and highly transient. The topic of ore genesis has been studied for a long time from a combined field/laboratory perspective and also experimentally in simplified systems, but rarely have these techniques been integrated in a coordinated way with the third perspective from numerical process modeling. The originality and innovation potential of this SPP lies in the coordination of empirical field-related studies that define the geological/mineralogical framework of natural ore systems with experimental work and numerical models that provide a quantitative understanding of the processes involved. This coordinated approach is essential to achieve an understanding of natural ore systems sufficient to develop exploration models for deeply covered deposits. The program has two complementary theme areas: A) Ore-forming systems – natural boundary conditions, i.e. field-based studies on exemplary natural systems, B) Simulating the processes – constraints on metal mobilization and precipitation, i.e. laboratory simulations for determining thermodynamic and kinetic parameters needed for thermo-chemical-mechanical process modeling of ore systems. The SPP will integrate these two areas to explore links and feedbacks among key processes in ore systems and to derive integrated models of ore formation.